Welcome everyone to the forth installment of The MageLaughlin Group. By this point I think it's fair to call this a (roughly) biweekly installment to give you a general prospect of our schedule.
Also you might have noticed something is a bit different this time around – as I'm the one starting us off and acting as the host for once!
So if by chance you haven't run away (you fool! ), I think it's time to take your seat, put on some enjoyable music, and let's go!
To my left I introduce and welcome our dangerous squirrel overlordsdfkjgh – hope you won't regret your suggestion My first question of the evening shall be an educational one:
It's been a while since the four colored menace has been banned in Standard and since the ban I haven't heard much about the format at all – and the pretty much only times I did it seemed to be doing fine. But what about you? Have you played the format since then, what deck(s) did you use, and would you agree with the format being in a decent stage right now?
Oh, stop, stop! You're liable to give me a swelled head! Stop it some more!
I'ma let you in on a little secret. I haven't actually played Standard since Paradise Druid rotated out. I too have heard that Standard is now at a good place, but I worry it's the metastability of a battered spouse after their abuser says that they'll finally stick with rehab this time (wow, did that get dark).
That sounds rather grim indeed. (Also people actually play Pioneer? Interesting, you might be the first person I know doing so ) I have indeed read you suggestion concerning AB/PB. To be honest I'm not sure whether that concept really would work (let's face it: Standard and Vintage are very different formats after all and can easily handle very different cards..? But I guess we'll kind of talk a bit more about this later on. Spoiler warning! ), but I definitely get your idea. Also I kind of wonder how the format would even look like..
But for now, enough of the misery of our current formats present, let's take a look into the future!
Kaldheim will drop in Q1 of next year and it'll will apparently be a Norse Mythology themed set. The potential name and art of two of the plane's gods were spoiled a while ago through some new figurines (also there were twocard and some potential character leaks), so spoiler season will most likely start soonTM. So let's start with the positive:
What would you love to see in the set? Themes, (returning) mechanics, characters, design decisions, or similar – what would you be excited for?
Let's face it: I'd never even attempt arguing with you here.
Also I'll respect your choice and not talk about the leaked cards any further then – especially since one of them reveals a theme as well as the name of a new mechanic (no reminder text though, so we don't know what it does – even though I have some suspicions..)
What has already been confirmed officially is them continuing the Pathways cycle (so most likely double faced modal cards in general?) and the return of Kaya (via some box artwork) – which would both be interesting to me. Also there are some rumors about two other potential planeswalkers to appear as well, one (obviously only click on the link if you don't mind the name getting spoiled) of them sounds really interesting to me..
I do like your suggestion of Saga's very much, though. To be honest, I think I'd actually like them as everygreens with a low as-fan.
And now – who would've guessed? – it's time to mirror the previous question in the most obvious way possible: What would you like to not see in the set? Themes, (returning) mechanics, characters, design decisions, or similar – what would you be afraid of?
Makes sence. For me the only thing I'm kind of afraid of is the second (again: only click the link if you don't mind the name getting spoiled to you) returning planeswalker already rumored so far I mentioned above. Because while the character's role in the story (according to speculation, obviously) does sound pretty fitting and potentially interesting, I'm not sure if I want to see that planeswalker to get a new card.. (And yes, this might play into your fears as well..)
But for our forth question, we will now leave Kaldheim and take a look at a completely different topic. From time to time a card comes out in a supplemental set breaking one Eternal format or another it was clearly not designed for. True-Name Nemesis, Arcum's Astrolabe and just recently Fall from Favor wrecking havoc in Pauper are just the first three examples coming to mind.
And whenever this happens, I see talk about not making cards from these sets legal in Eternal formats they were clearly not designed for – but what would be your take on this matter?
But seriously, this question does require two answers:
First, there is the Cherry Fonduethe CORRECT choice is for WotC to HIRE MORE TESTERS DEDICATED TO EACH FORMAT, AND MAKE SURE A NEW DESIGN DOESN'T BREAK THAT FORMAT!!! But this will cost money, eat into Hasbro's bottom line, and be the most sensible answer, so capitalism dictates that it be rejected.
The second answer is to pull the nuclear option of just saying that a card that isn't designed for a certain format isn't legal in that format. This is known as the "Lazy, Wanton Designer" method, and will lead to utter madness and stupidity, but when has that ever stopped anyone? 2020, y'all!!!
Option B does have a kind of strange, internal sense, but it will piss off the majority of the playerbase.
Yeah, Option A really sounds so much better than option B. Especially for me as I mostly care about Pauper as far as the Eternal formats are concerned (as already mentioned previously) – so finally having a common downshift of a card (and those would kind of need to get included in the procedure the same way to not cause confusion) but not being allowed to use it just.. feels weird.
Also I do like the concept of cards breaking out of their shell and making it in new formats (especially when they didn't have much success in their original one) – but whenever one of these breaks something, I start pondering as well..
And now for our final topic, we take another look at the calendar realizing the Christmas holidays are just a few days away. Since 2006 WotC follows the yearly tradition of releasing an awesome Happy Holidays card – and preparing this link made me realize they have indeed already spoiled the 2020 one as well: Topdeck the Halls. Looking at it, this card kind of makes me want to go on a tangent about how this fits into the Secret Lairs (funny how that video just came out) discussion we had two episodes ago, but as this actually not what I wanted the final question to be about.. Instead, I was just curious if you could come up with a design for a(n alternative) 2020 Happy Holiday entry!
Well, guess my own take is a bit less dark To make sure I wouldn't be able to ponder about this in advance, I decided to visit DeviantArt after posting the question and then finding some fitting artwork to do a quick topdown design. This is what I ended up with:
But with that, I think we have once again reached the end of this episode. Have to admit, sitting on the other side for once was quite interesting indeed – I might want to repeat the challenge in the future
So for today, there's not much left to do other than saying thanks to sdfkjgh for giving me this opportunity and saying goodbye to everyone reading The MageLaughlin Group! (I don't know who you are, but I know you're out there thanks to the view counters )